31. Jan 2022 by Walburga Fröhlich

What it's like to be frightened by your own courage

What it's like to be frightened by your own courage

If you aim high, you fall low, we learn that in childhood. We’d rather not climb too high, because nothing seems worse than falling down. In a society that values grounded people above all, one could easily become frightened of one’s own courage to dream.

For all those who haven’t heard: capito has made it into the EIC Accelerator. For all those who don’t really know what the EIC Accelerator is: It is the EU’s most highly endowed support program for “groundbreaking innovations with disruptive effects and international scaling potential”. That is what the Austrian Research Promotion Agency FFG says. For us, this means: 1.7 million euros to work on the automated translation of complicated texts into easy-to-understand versions and to bring our capito software on the European and the US market.

So much courage, perhaps too much

It didn’t even take a minute for the enormous joy to mix with the equally great respect for the challenge, like a well-done marble cake. Will we be able to do it? Will we be able to convince people of our solution? Jump across the pond, get into the ring with tech giants, swim in the big ocean full of sharks and pass without being bitten to death? Us? With me as the boss? Oh, so much courage – might that be too much?

Grounded people as an ideal?

“Pride goes before a fall”, it echoes from the etiquette rules from childhood, “he who aims high falls low”, and so on, the repertoire for propagating the grounding of people is large. Not to mention the manifestations of instructions to “keep yourself small and quiet” that we girls have to endure in our socialisation. They all failed to work on me, I honestly tried. Too pushy, too determined, too driven by my own ideas. The only way left for me is to take the path in the fresh wind of courage. Frightened or not.

More is more

So: take a deep breath and let’s go. capito has the potential. It is possible that in the not so distant future, many millions of people will be able to understand all the information they need to navigate life and make good decisions. Simply because capito automatically makes this information easier to understand whenever someone needs it.


The idea of actually being able to achieve this big goal together with my team outweighs all the fear of my own courage. That is what is powerful in a social impact enterprise: The possibility of failing is no longer that important considering the great opportunity that presents itself. Even if we fall, we know: We have already achieved something that others are already building on. And that fact remains.

Those who aim high can fall low and still not fail

20 years ago I founded atempo together with Klaus Candussi. capito was one project of several in our basket of ideas. Now capito is aiming high, standing on its own two feet, or to put it less poetically: capito is positioning itself as an independent brand on the international market. A social project has become a digital, highly scalable business model with social impact. A product of which one can truly say: More is more. More understandable language equals more impact. Faster translation equals more impact. More test groups with people with learning difficulties equals more jobs.


The relationship with atempo changes from dependency to attachment. What connects capito with atempo is the vision of a world where people are not excluded just because they have learning difficulties; are not disabled just because they are different. This cannot be achieved by keeping the ball low.

Walburga Fröhlich - capito digital

Walburga Fröhlich is CEO and co-founder of capito. In this role, she combines entrepreneurship with social impact.


Together with her team, she has made capito one of the most promising digital start-ups in Europe. And she wants to continue to aim high.

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